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Quantity question: Write a lot to write well

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Quantity produces quality. If you only write a few things, you’re doomed.” — Ray Bradbury

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Flickr: Amira_a

Many writers will admit to stacks of unread stories sitting dormant in a desk drawer — stories that will never see the light of day. There was a time I mourned for those unloved pieces. The idea that no soul would ever lay eyes on them made me feel sad.

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This not so true anymore. Just as in life, as I have advanced in my writing career, I can look back and see how my skills have grown.

Those words and phrases that once flew from my head and danced on the page now lie flat and shapeless under my veteran gaze.

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I love those pages now for an entirely different reason. Those reams of half-written novels and tossed-away odes have lighted the way to where I am now in my growth as a writer. Each word has served as a stepping stone set in a broad, unpaved landscape that has led me closer and closer to, well, better writing.

And I write everything. Poetry and novels. Children’s picture books and memoirs. Press releases and blogs. I shy from no genre.

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I still have miles to go before I set down my pen and call it a writing life. So, now I write whatever and whenever I can. For pay and for not. When I love and when I seethe. When I want to and when I don’t. All with the faith that each word teaches me to be better.

What about you? Are you writing quantity or are you holding out for only quality?

Kerri S. Mabee is managing editor at EducatedWriter.com and founder of Breeze Media & Communications. Learn more about her at kerrismabee.com.

Kerri S. Mabee

2 thoughts on “Quantity question: Write a lot to write well

  1. Great article, it reads beautifully! I struggle with pushing myself to write a lot even if the quality isn’t there, but I do think it’s important.

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